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Use the CData ODBC Driver for Freshdesk in MicroStrategy Web

Connect to Freshdesk data in MicroStrategy Web using the CData ODBC Driver for Freshdesk.

MicroStrategy is an analytics and mobility platform that enables data-driven innovation. When you pair MicroStrategy with the CData ODBC Driver for Freshdesk, you gain database-like access to live Freshdesk data from MicroStrategy, expanding your reporting and analytics capabilities. In this article, we walk through adding Freshdesk as external data in MicroStrategy Web and creating a simple visualization of Freshdesk data.

The CData ODBC Driver offers unmatched performance for interacting with live Freshdesk data in MicroStrategy due to optimized data processing built into the driver. When you issue complex SQL queries from MicroStrategy to Freshdesk, the driver pushes supported SQL operations, like filters and aggregations, directly to Freshdesk and utilizes the embedded SQL engine to process unsupported operations (often SQL functions and JOIN operations) client-side. With built-in dynamic metadata querying, you can visualize and analyze Freshdesk data using native MicroStrategy data types.

Connect to Freshdesk as an ODBC Data Source

Information for connecting to Freshdesk follows, along with different instructions for configuring a DSN in Windows and Linux environments (the ODBC Driver for Freshdesk must be installed on the machine hosting the connected MicroStrategy Intelligence Server).

FreshDesk makes use of basic authentication. To connect to data, set the following connection properties:

  • Domain: Set this to the domain associated with your FreshDesk account. For example, in your URL: https://my_domain.freshdesk.com.
  • APIKey: Set this to the API key associated with your FreshDesk account. To retrieve your API key, Log into your support Portal -> Click on profile picture in the top right corner -> profile settings page. The API key will be available below the change password section to the right.

When you configure the DSN, you may also want to set the Max Rows connection property. This will limit the number of rows returned, which is especially helpful for improving performance when designing reports and visualizations.

Windows

If you have not already, first specify connection properties in an ODBC DSN (data source name). This is the last step of the driver installation. You can use the Microsoft ODBC Data Source Administrator to create and configure ODBC DSNs.

Linux

If you are installing the CData ODBC Driver for Freshdesk in a Linux environment, the driver installation predefines a system DSN. You can modify the DSN by editing the system data sources file (/etc/odbc.ini) and defining the required connection properties.

/etc/odbc.ini

[CData FreshDesk Sys] Driver = CData ODBC Driver for Freshdesk Description = My Description Domain = MyDomain APIKey = myAPIKey

For specific information on using these configuration files, please refer to the help documentation (installed and found online).

Connect to and Visualize Freshdesk Data using MicroStrategy Web

Once you have created a database instance in MicroStrategy Developer and connected it to a project, you can perform a data import of Freshdesk data from MicroStrategy Web. Alternatively, you can create a new data source based on the ODBC Driver.*

  1. Open MicroStrategy Web and select your project.
  2. Click Add External Data, select Databases, and choose Select a Table as the Import Option.
  3. In the Import from Tables wizard, click to add a new data source.
    • Select DSN Data Sources
    • Set the DSN property to the previously configured DSN (CData FreshDesk Sys)
    • Set the Version property to Generic DBMS
    • Set the User and Password properties (or use filler values)
    • Set the Data Source Name
  4. After creating the data source, click to edit the catalog options and set the following queries and click OK.
    • SQL statement to retrieve tables available in the data source
      SELECT
        CatalogName NAME_SPACE,
        TableName TAB_NAME
      FROM
        SYS_TABLES
          
    • SQL statement to retrieve columns for the selected tables
      SELECT DISTINCT 
        CatalogName NAME_SPACE, 
        TableName TAB_NAME, 
        ColumnName COL_NAME, 
        DataTypeName DATA_TYPE, 
        Length DATA_LEN, 
        NumericPrecision DATA_PREC, 
        NumericScale DATA_SCALE 
      FROM 
        SYS_TABLECOLUMNS 
      WHERE 
        TableName IN (#TABLE_LIST#) 
      ORDER BY
        1,2,3
          
  5. Drag a table into the pane. Note: Since we create a live connection, we can import whole tables and utilize the filtering and aggregation features native to the MicroStrategy products.
  6. Click Finish, choose to the option to connect live, save the query, and choose the option to create a new dossier.
  7. Choose a visualization, choose fields to display, and apply any filters to create a new visualization of Freshdesk data. Data types are discovered automatically through dynamic metadata discovery. Where possible, the complex queries generated by the filters and aggregations will be pushed down to Freshdesk, while any unsupported operations (which can include SQL functions and JOIN operations) will be managed client-side by the CData SQL engine embedded in the driver.
  8. Once you have finished configuring the dossier, click File -> Save.

Using the CData ODBC Driver for Freshdesk in MicroStrategy Web, you can easily create robust visualizations and reports on Freshdesk data. Read our other articles on connecting to Freshdesk in MicroStrategy and connecting to Freshdesk in MicroStrategy Desktop for more examples.


Note: connecting using a ODBC driver requires a 3- or 4-tier architecture.